"Prayer is simply a two-way conversation between you and God." -Billy Graham
If we're going to see kids not just know about God, but actually know God, then we must teach them how to talk with God.
Prayer is one of the keys to kids having a growing relationship with God. Let's look at 5 keys to teaching kids to pray.
Key #1 - Teach kids what prayer is. Show them that prayer is talking with God. Share key verses about prayer from God's Word like 1 John 5:14, Ephesians 6:18, James 5:13, Mark 11:24, Psalm 17:6, Romans 12:12 and Luke 11:2-4.
Teach them prayer is the way you spend time with God and grow closer to Him. The more time you spend with Him in prayer, the better you will know Him.
Teach kids that prayer is not only talking to God, but it is also listening to God. In the stillness, He speaks to us in the quiet voice of the Holy Spirit. He also speaks to us as we read His Word and pause to listen to His voice echoing through it.
Key #2 - Teach kids that prayer is a way to express gratitude to God. Help kids cultivate an attitude of gratitude by having them thank God for who He is and for what He has done. This can be done by having them make a list of things they are thankful for and praying through it. Praying before meals is another way to use prayer to help kids be thankful.
Key #3 - Make time for prayer in your services. Each week in our services we take time for kids to pray and be prayed for. We lead them through guided and personal prayers and then they share prayer requests and are prayed for by their leader. We also give them time to sit quietly and listen to God. Each time we do this, God comes and meets with the kids. If you truly want to see kids' faith grow deeper, make prayer a vital part of your services.
Key #4 - Provide kids and parents with tools for praying at home. We know that if kids are going to grow in their faith, they must learn to spend time with God during the week. So each week, we provide them with a take home paper and that includes prayer tools. Encourage parents to pray with their children at home as well. The primary way kids should learn to pray is by watching their parents.
Key #5 - Celebrate answered prayer. When kids see God answer their prayers, it deepens their faith. Keep track of the kids' prayers and when they are answered take time to celebrate with them.
Here are some pictures of some of the kids in our ministry praying. There is nothing more important than teaching kids to pray. Let's make it a top priority in our ministries.